tv Americas Election Headquarters FOX News October 3, 2012 5:55pm-6:00pm PDT
i am bill o'reilly. please remember the spin stops here because we are looking out for you. now fox news special coverage of the presidential debate from denver. >> welcome to the first presidential debate between governor mitt romney and president barack obama. i'm bret baier, live in the spin room at the university of denver. >> i'm megyn kelley inside the debate hall. tonight for the first time, the american people will see the two candidates -- the same stage, side by side, matching wits, arguing policy and trying to connect directly with voters. it is no easy task. history shows the polls are affected far more by debate gaffes than by rhetorical
eloquence. al al gore's repeated sighs in his first debate with george w. bush. richard nixon's sweaty brow next to a fit, tanned jfk. ronald reagan's barbs, "there you go again," turning the race in his favor. this will likely be the most important debate of this race. it all starts in moments. they just introduced the first lady and ann romney. soon, the candidates. bret? >> just heard from jim lehrer, warming up the crowd, telling them to be quiet. let's bring in our panel. brit hume and former howard dean campaign manager and fox news contributor, joe trippi. gentlemen, what should we be looking for? >> the first thing, obviously, we will see these men, side by side on the same stage for the first time, ever. and we don't know how that's going to work. we don't know how they will seem. we don't know anything about that. that will be the first thing to
watch for. how they seem side by side. and after that, of course, it's all up to the -- how the debate goes. >> romney benefits from that, from the get go, being up with the president, that will make a difference. i think people are going to see him for the first time. i think in the end, romney wants to use the debate to change the dynamic in the race. president obama wants to keep this thing going the way it's going from their perspective. that's going to be a titanic struggle. which one wins that fight is going to tell us, you know, whether the dynamic changes later on in the race, tomorrow, into the future. >> brit, there are six segments in this debate. 15-minute segments. they start with two questions. and then it's supposed to be a discussion. >> right. >> this is a bit of a different format. it could make for a different kind of debate than we have seen in past presidential debates. >> it won't be as tightly restricted as to time and answers, one presumes. i think that will make for a more free-flowing conversation.
it might be the format that the debate commission has been groping for for years, that really works the best. it is not too loose so things get out of hand. but it is not so tight that it feels completely controlled. that will be interesting to see as well. >> joe, let me ask you, as somebody who has handled candidates on big debate nights, we forget -- they are human beings. are they likely to be nervous right now? >> i don't think so. look, they have both been through a lot. romney has been through a lot of tough debates and handled himself very well in the primaries. president obama has been under the gun, not disbluft debates, but as president. i don't think they are nervous. i think -- i think what is interesting they haven't had a lot of time in a dynamic where the two of them have been together, as brit points out. that will be interesting, feeling each other out, in a way. i think this debate format lends itself to some unknowns for both of them. they are going to find out -- they may end up liking each
other more than they think. >> you said that the onus is on governor romney here? >> i think so. he has ground to make up in the race. he seems to be behind, especially so in some of the key states. and, you know, he needs to have some momentum coming out of this. there are things that -- that have been left out there as issues, by the attacks on him, by the things he hasn't said. so he has ground to make up on making it clear to the voters that he really does have a plausible economic plan, for example. he will need to do that if he can. >> we will be back with more analysis. stick around after the debate. we will have complete analysis. and we're partnering with twitter, which is monitoring millions of tweets being sent during and after the debates. by the end of the night, we will highlight the moments that moved people online and break down which topics got the most people tweeting. of course, you can follow megyn and me, as well. before we get to the top of the hour, an interesting stat about our c